May 14, 2007

That's What I Say

...or rather that's what she said* - Kathleen Parker homers to right with this column:
In the "gotcha" question of the first GOP debate, journalist Jim VandeHei asked John McCain: "Do you believe in evolution?" A natural response might have been, "Well, that depends on how you define evolution."...

On its surface, the question seems simple enough -- if oddly out of century. Darwin's theory of evolution isn't exactly hot off the presses.

But it remains controversial among some people of faith -- including some respected scientists -- for whom evolutionary theory reduces man's world to a godless accident bereft of moral meaning or structure.

To the faithful, in other words, it is not such a simple question. It also was not a fair question under the circumstances. Yes or no doesn't quite cover the complex issues implicit in any mention of Darwin these days.

In a conversation after the debate, Huckabee said, "I wish life were so simple. If it were, we'd be in a game show and not running a presidential campaign. ... If I'd had time, I would have asked whether he meant macro or micro evolution?''

That's a different sort of answer than what is inferred from a simple "no'' forced by the manic pace of a 90-minute "debate'' among 10 candidates, none of whom is qualified to seriously debate scientific theory. Nor, as president, should they try. In fact, Huckabee says he does believe in evolution (with qualifications) and thinks Darwin's theory should be taught in schools.

"I do know that species do, in fact, adapt and there are many instances of adaptation and mutation,'' he said, "but I still believe that the design has a designer and the creation has a creator. I wouldn't pretend to fill in the blanks between what God created and what is today."
* - today's homage to The Office

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